As an eleven year old, I helped Mom skin and can rose-kissed, juicy Rio Oso Gem peaches, big as a man’s fist. They hung like innocent children in the leaf-folded orchards surrounding Yuba City. Their ripe scent fragranced August evenings, fuzz-tickled our noses and made us sneeze as the sun sank behind the Sutter Buttes. Dad was a Sutter Basin farmer; mom ran the house and kept five kids in order. I was the oldest. Not even the arrowed flights of autumn geese warned us of the tragedy that struck our little town at one a.m. on Christmas Eve. And like the levee melting away under the force of the Feather River, our fragile family fabric began to give way as well. I hoped and prayed that my newfound faith would help me find my own wings.